Apple claims its latest iPhone 7 handset is the ‘best’ smartphone it has ever created.
The new device was unveiled to thousands at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco tonight (5PM GMT, September 7). It is the 14th iPhone since the first iteration launched in June 2007 and comes after the manufacturer announced in July that it had sold more than a billion iPhones. CEO Tim Cook claimed it is ‘the best iPhone we [Apple] have ever created.’
Two versions were announced; the regular 7 and the 7 Plus. The former has a 4.7 -inch screen, whilst the latter has a 5.5-inch display.
Another major difference is the camera. The Plus includes a dual lens (below), similar to the ones featured on the Huawei P9 and Honor 8. This allows the phone to zoom in further without compromising on overall quality.
Users can create ‘Bokeh’ effects using the new camera. Apple claims this makes still images appear as if they are 3D.
A ‘Live Preview’ mode is available, which allows users to see the results of any effect even before the the photo has been snapped.
Apple claimed the 12MP rear camera on both devices is the best it has ever made. It has been designed to take in more light, is 60 per cent faster and more energy efficient than previous versions. There is a 7MP camera included at the front.
A new A10 Fusion chip has been installed in both models, which is 40 per cent faster than the A9 chip featured in the 6 and 6s. Apple claimed it is the ‘most powerful chip ever in a smartphone,’ allowing it to run even games console-standard software.
Conventional headphone ports have been removed from the device, which means headphones can now only be connected via Bluetooth or Apple’s trademark Lightning port. However, the phone will also include an adapter for headphones with a conventional audio connector.
New wireless earphones, called the Air Pods, were shown off as well. They use infrared sensors to detect when they are in a user’s ear and can provide up to five hours of listening on a single charge.
The new retina display is 25 per cent brighter than the screens featured on the iPhone 6 and 6S. Apple senior VP Phil Schiller claimed the screen is the ‘best’ the manufacturer has created, offering ‘cinema quality’ images and videos.
Stereo speakers have also been included, a first for any iPhone. These have been designed to be twice as loud as those from the 6 and 6s. A completely redesigned home button has been added. It features ‘taptic’ feedback, which vibrates whenever the user opens an app or interacts with a message. Another major addition to the new device is water and dust resistance.
Three, O2 and Vodafone, EE, Virgin and Carphone have confirmed they will be stocking the new smartphone in gloss black, matte black, gold and rose gold variations. Both versions are available in 32GB, 128GB and 256GB capacities with pricing starting from £599 (iPhone 7) and £719 (iPhone 7 Plus). They can be preordered now, with general UK sale starting September 16.
Apple Watch Series 2
The company also used the event to launch the Apple Watch Series 2. This new version is waterproof allowing wearers to use it whilst swimming in depths of up to 50 metres.
A dual core processor has been added, designed to make the watch 50 per cent faster than the previous generation.
It is equipped with a new display, which Apple claims is the brightest of any product it has launched. Another new feature is built-in GPS, which will then send a route map of any run to a connected iPhone.
The watchOS3 operating system was also unveiled, which includes on-screen animations, the ability to ‘hand write’ text and the option to share fitness activities to friends and family. Users can contact emergency services by pressing and holding the side button, which will also send messages to emergency contacts.
There are stainless steel variations, alongside a new ceramic white version. A special edition created in partnership with Nike was also unveiled. It features a stretchable rubber band and branding from the sportswear brand.
Users can go straight into the Watch’s run app by asking Siri, the device’s personal assistant. It will also remind owners to go for a run at certain points throughout the day.
Pricing for all versions of the Series 2 start from £369. An updated version of the first generation, called Series 1, is being released with the same processor as the Series 2. It will cost £269. Both will be available from September 16, with the Nike variant being in stock from October.